Up and down the country, decisions are taken every year that affect us as consumers of energy, post and water. These can be anything from new laws, to choices made by private companies. A wide variety of interests and priorities are considered by these decision makers, who range from businesses and political parties to government officials and regulators.
The Consumer Futures Unit puts consumers at the heart of policy and regulation of these vital sectors in Scotland. Part of Citizens Advice Scotland, we research and gather evidence, which we use to improve outcomes for consumers.
This is our annual report for 2016-17.
The report covers a wide range of our activity in the energy, post and water sectors, including:
- Research-based recommendations that consumers of district heating in Scotland should be given similar protections to electricity and gas consumers through a licensing scheme.
- Research that will be used to drive collaboration with the parcels industry to explore how delivery surcharging in the Highlands and Islands can be reduced.
- Establishing (in partnership with Scottish Water and the Water Industry Commission for Scotland (WICS)) the Customer Forum to represent consumers during negotiations with Scottish Water over the 2021-2027 Strategic Review of Charges.
We have recently published our work plan for 2017-18 and look forward to continuing our work on behalf of consumers.